Fieldfisher's Jonathan Zimmern has settled a claim for Mr Simpson, who required a seven additional operations following a poorly performed gastric bypass at York Hospital.
Mr Simpson decided to explore the possibility of undergoing gastric surgery following a suggestion from his GP. He attended an appointment with a gastroenterologist at York Hospital who advised that he could have a gastric band, a gastric sleeve or a gastric bypass performed. The gastric bypass involved stapling the stomach so that only an egg-cup sized "pouch" was left. Mr Simpson decided to undergo a gastric bypass.
Later that year, Mr Simpson underwent the gastric bypass operation. During the procedure however, the surgeon damaged the blood vessels which supply blood to the stomach. It was later discovered that he had inserted staples into the wrong part of the stomach and that the "pouch" he had created had no blood supply.
Following the operation, Mr Simpson was very unwell. He suffered from severe diarrhoea and developed various leaks from the "pouch" that had been created during the operation. Throughout the following three weeks, he required six further operations to try to fix the various leaks and insert a PEG tube.
Mr Simpson was eventually discharged from hospital almost two months after the initial operation. He was not allowed to eat or drink anything for weeks after his discharge and continued to suffer from significant abdominal pain. He returned to work on a part-time basis but, following a mesh repair of hernias which formed as a result of the various operations, he had to retire due to ill-health the following year.
Mr Simpson instructed Jonathan Zimmern to investigate the care that he received at the hospital. Jonathan instructed a Surgeon to comment on the care provided to Mr Simpson. The expert was very critical of the surgeon's approach and technique during the operation, and his failure to recognise that he had not created a viable gastric pouch.
Surprisingly, the Trust failed to admit liability. Whilst fighting the allegations, the Trust put forward several different and contradictory accounts of what had happened during the operation. Each of these accounts were disproved by the expert surgeon instructed by Jonathan.
Eventually, and only after lengthy discussions with the Trust, Jonathan was able to negotiate a settlement of £345,000 for Mr Simpson.
Upon completion of the case, Mr Simpson said:
"I would like to express my thanks and gratitude to yourself and your team, for all that you have done for us over the duration of our case, and for the fantastic results you have achieved on our behalf.
"When we first started to consider the prospect of pursuing legal action, we were worried that the process would be complicated and that the road to compensation would be difficult. You and your team have made what is a very complex process seem easy; slowly walking us through each step as it comes, and taking the time to ensure that we fully understand our position and our options as the situation developed.
"The eagerness of everyone on your staff to help us and their passion for what they do has made this whole process seem as simple and stress free as possible for me and my family - leaving us to focus completely on my recovery and on getting our lives back to normal.
"While the actual results achieved by your team in reaching this settlement have exceeded our expectations, we are equally grateful for the ease of the process that got us here. The entire process was handled excellently by your team, who kept us informed and updated at every stage and required minimal input from us.
"The help, advice, and ultimately the results achieved by your team during this difficult period in mine and my family's lives has been fantastic.
"While my recovery has, and continues to be, a long and challenging road, the results your team have achieved has made finances one less thing for us to worry about. Your hard work and commitment has brought me financial security, where previously there was only worry and uncertainty.
"I would not hesitate to recommend your services to anyone who feels they may have been a victim of medical negligence, and I thank you once again for all your hard work."
Jonathan has been dealing with complex, high value medical negligence cases for over ten years, covering areas such as birth injury, delayed diagnosis, inquests and orthopaedic injury amongst other areas. He is a member of the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers and is acting on behalf of the Trustees for the vCJD compensation scheme – which manages £67.5m for victims of variant Cruetzfeldt Jakob Disease and their families.
He often handles cases which are reported in regional and national press and regularly takes over cases that have been mishandled by other solicitors. He has particular expertise in dealing with complicated cases of clinical negligence which overlap with pre-existing personal injury claims.
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